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The socio-cultural practices of the Dorset rock climbing community towards the local environment.

Abbas, Y., 2020. The socio-cultural practices of the Dorset rock climbing community towards the local environment. Masters Thesis (Masters). Bournemouth University.

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ABBAS, Yazan_M.Res_2019.pdf



This research focuses on understanding the interplay between rock climbers and the space of participation. Using an ethnographically-informed qualitative approach, the data for this research was collected using active participant observation and 22 interviews, between 2017 and 2018, with a population of highly committed and achieved rock climbers in Dorset, UK. Data displays that rock climbing is the producer of an array of positive emotions and sensations that hold therapeutic qualities and identity-forming abilities within them. The analysis portrays rock climbers to be community-driven and suggests that locality in rock climbing is acquired through knowledge, skills, bonds and friendship, rather than location and geographic proximity. The research also suggests that rock climbing has the ability to take rock climbers to the most secluded of areas. To reach these spaces, climbers must employ their physical, material and embodied capital whereby the climbers’ ability to visit these places become correlated with their accumulated capital. The analysis suggests that rock climbing is less individual than other lifestyle sports as it requires the presence of a facilitator, the belayer. Territoriality in rock climbing is portrayed to be heavily interlinked with notions of authority and power, which are acquired through prolonged exposure to rock climbing, experience and the accomplishment of first ascents, the most prestigious achievement in rock climbing. Data suggests the role of the British Mountaineering Council and the Access Fund is a passive type of governing, as they work towards raising climbers’ awareness, resolving disputes, raising funds and improving climber’s access to the rock. Lastly, the research highlights the value of non- academic niche subcultural media to academic research.

Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Additional Information:If you feel that this work infringes your copyright please contact the BURO Manager.
Uncontrolled Keywords:rock climbing; lifestyle sports; community; localism; relationship with nature; governance; intragroup conflict; territoriality
Group:Bournemouth University Business School
ID Code:34201
Deposited By: Symplectic RT2
Deposited On:24 Jun 2020 13:43
Last Modified:14 Mar 2022 14:22


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